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Top 20 venture capital deals of 2008  

2009-03-04 17:22:00|  分类: Bio-Pharma |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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Top 20 venture capital deals of 2008

 

2008 was not the year investors were eager to take risks. As the recession deepened, lack of funding caused an increasing number of small biotechs laid off workers and closed their doors. By the fourth quarter, VC investments had plunged 33 percent and biotech investing dropped 31 percent.

But there were bright spots last year. Good science will attract funding in any market, and the companies below demonstrated technologies that attracted VC investment in even in the toughest economic conditions. Take a look at the top 20 U.S. companies that raised big money in 2008.

1. Pacific Biosciences of California - $120M

2. OncoMed Pharmaceuticals - 106.96M

3. Pacira Pharmaceuticals - $85M

4. Proteolix - $79M

5. Amyris Biotechnologies - $65.11M

6. Biolex Therapeutics - $65M

7. Portola Pharmaceuticals - $60M

8. BrainCells - $50.6M

9. ChemoCentryx - $50M

10. Ironwood Pharmaceuticals - $50M

11. Gloucester Pharmaceuticals - $47.13M

12. Radius Health - $43.3M

13. Precision Therapeutics - $43.01M

14. Light Sciences Oncology - $41M

15. Catalyst Biosciences - $40.4M

16. Five Prime Therapeutics - $40.28M

17. Alder Biopharmaceuticals - $40.2M

18. Hydra Biosciences - $39.22M

19. Enlight Bioscience - $39M

20. BiPar Sciences - $37.5M

Data courtesy of the National Venture Capital Association

1. Company: Pacific Biosciences
 
Based: Menlo Park, CA
Amount: $120M

Investors: Alloy Ventures, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Maverick Capital,T. Rowe Price Threshold Partnerships, Intel Capital,Blackstone Group,Duff Ackerman & Goodrich, Undisclosed Firm, Morgan Stanley Private Equity, AllianceBernstein, Mohr Davidow Ventures

Scoop: Pacific Biosciences closed two deals in 2008 for a total of $120 million in funding. The company is developing the technology needed to complete a high-quality sequence of the human genome in 15 minutes. The money will be used to support its SMRT DNA sequencing platform.

2. Company: OncoMed Pharmaceuticals
Based: Redwood City, CA
Amount: $106.96

Investors: Morgenthaler Ventures, Undisclosed Venture Firm, Bay Partners, Latterell Venture Partners, Vertical Group, The Nomura International, GSK Ventures, Adams Street Partners, De Novo Ventures, U.S. Venture Partners, Undisclosed Firm.

Scoop: OncoMed Pharmaceuticals is targeting cancer by developing monoclonal antibodies that target the biologic pathways critical to tumor initiating cells. The bulk of OncoMed's 2008 haul came from a massive $93.3 million round in November. It will be used to advance the company's cancer stem cell antibody programs--including lead compound OMP-21M18 and a second antibody--through Phase II clinical trials. OncoMed was a 2008 Fierce 15 company.

 

3. Company: Pacira Pharmaceuticals
Based: San Diego, CA
Amount: $85M

Investors: Undisclosed Venture Firm, MPM Capital, OrbiMed Advisors, HBM BioVentures, Sanderling Ventures.

Scoop: In November, Pacira Pharmaceuticals extended its Series A round from the original $30 million to $85 million. The company, which is developing several drugs (mostly for pain management), is conducting clinical trials of its experimental treatment Exparel in a number of pain indications. It's also running a Phase III program for DepoBupivacaine for postsurgical pain.

4. Company: Proteolix
Based: South San Francisco, CA
Amount: $79M

Investors: Khosla Ventures, Duff Ackerman & Goodrich, TPG Growth, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Undisclosed Venture Firm

Scoop: In September, South San Francisco-based Proteolix raised a whopping $79 million in a single round of funding. The company is developing therapies that target certain cancers and immunological conditions by inhibiting the proteasome, thereby disrupting protein turnover in cells. Money from the round is being used to finance Phase II clinical trials of it's lead product carfilzomib and advance the anti-cancer therapeutic into Phase III clinical trials for the treatment of multiple myeloma. Proteolix is also advancing other earlier stage proteasome inhibitor drug candidates.

5. Company: Amyris Biotechnologies
Based: Emeryville, CA
Amount: $65.11M

Investors: Khosla Ventures, Duff Ackerman & Goodrich, TPG Growth, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Undisclosed Venture Firm

Scoop: Amyris is a renewable products company which is developing solutions for transportation energy and climate issues. Under a non-profit initiative, Amyris is applying its technology to provide a second source of artemisinin, an anti-malarial therapy, which will be commercialized by Sanofi. Artemisinin is derived from a rare African tree. Rather than trying to cultivate the tree, Amyris is using synthetic biology to produce the derivative in the lab, which will make the drug more affordable and easier to produce.

6. Company: Biolex Therapeutics
Based: Pittsboro, NC
Amount: $65M

Investors: Mitsui & Co. Venture Partners, Intersouth Partners, Kitty Hawk Capital, Clarus Ventures, Johnson & Johnson Development Corporation, Polaris Venture Partners, Undisclosed Firm, OrbiMed Advisors, Dow Chemical Company, Quaker BioVentures, Wakefield Group, Investor Growth Capital

Scoop: After dropping IPO plans, Biolex Therapeutics raised $60 million from investors in its fourth round. The North Carolina-based company uses its LEX SystemSM to develop hard-to-make therapeutic proteins and to optimize monoclonal antibodies. It's most advanced drug candidate is Locteron for hepatitis C. Biolex is using the money to prepare Locteron for Phase III trials and complete ongoing Phase II tests.

7. Company: Portola Pharmaceuticals
Based: South San Francisco, CA
Amount: $60M

Investors: Advanced Technology Ventures, Sutter Hill Ventures, Prospect Venture Partners, AllianceBernstein, Brookside International Incorporated, MPM Capital, D. E. Shaw Group, Frazier Healthcare and Technology Ventures, Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, Industrial Bank of Taiwan, Alta Partners, T. Rowe Price Threshold Partnerships, Adage Inc., Pac-Link Management Corporation, Abingworth Management, CIDC Consultants, Goldman Sachs, Undisclosed Firm

Scoop: Portola is the only company to make both the 2007 and 2008 top 20 venture capital deals list. The company rounded up $60 million in July after securing $70 million in 2007. Most of the funding will help advance Portola's lead drug betrixaban, a therapy for prevention and treatment of deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism after orthopedic surgery, for stroke prevention in patients with atrial fibrillation and for secondary prevention of myocardial infarction and stroke. The money will support betrixaban through Phase II trials. Portola is also advancing its Phase I drug PRT060128 and additional preclinical targets.

Recently, Portola inked a $575 million deals that gave Novartis worldwide rights to Portola Pharmaceuticals' mid-stage anti-clotting therapeutic elinogrel.

8. Company: BrainCells
Based: San Diego, CA
Amount: $50.6

Investors: New Enterprise Associates, Alexandria Real Estate, MedImmune Ventures, Oxford Bioscience Partners, Bay City Capital, Technology Partners, Pappas Ventures, NeuroVentures Capital

Scoop: San Diego's BrainCells raised $50 million after it extended its Series B financing to gain an additional $20 million from new investor New Enterprise Associates and existing investor Alexandria Real Estate Equities. BrainCells says it's developing compounds that promote the growth of new neurons for CNS diseases. Its lead product candidate, BCI-540, is designed to treat patients suffering from depression with anxiety. BrainCells was a 2008 Fierce 15 company.

9. Company: ChemoCentryx
Based: Mountain View, CA
Amount: $50M

Investors: HBM BioVentures, Undisclosed Firm, Odlander, Fredrikson, OrbiMed Advisors, Alta Partners, Undisclosed Firm

Scoop: ChemoCentryx dropped an IPO in 2008 but was able to raise $50 million in funding. The company is developing orally-administered therapeutics that target the chemokine and chemoattractant systems in order to treat autoimmune diseases, inflammatory disorders and cancer. ChemoCentryx's most advanced program is Traficet-EN, which is in Phase III trials for Crohn's disease, Phase II for Celiac disease and Phase I for ulcerative colitis. Additionally, the company is in Phase I trials for several other drug candidates: CCX025 for gastrointestinal diseases, CCX140 for vascular restenosis and multiple sclerosis, and CCX 354 for rheumatoid arthritis.

10. Company: Ironwood Pharmaceuticals
Based: Cambridge, MA
Amount: $50M

Investors: Fidelity Biosciences, Venrock Associates, Polaris Venture Partners, Morgan Stanley Private Equity

Scoop: Ironwood secured $50 million in private equity financing in October. The company is using the funds to support its ongoing Phase III  program  for linaclotide, a treatment for irritable bowel syndrome with constipation and chronic constipation. Ironwood is also investing in its pipeline of internally discovered drug candidates, and expanding its commercial capabilities.

11. Company: Gloucester Pharmaceuticals
Based: Cambridge, MA
Amount: $47.13M

Investors: Prospect Venture Partners, Individuals, ProQuest Investments, CIBC Capital Partners, Undisclosed Firm

Scoop: Gloucester Pharmaceuticals acquires clinical-stage oncology drug candidates and advances them through regulatory approval and commercialization. It's most advanced drug program is romidepsin, a histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor in Phase III trials for T-cell lymphomas.

12. Company: Radius Health
Based: Cambridge, MA
Amount: $43.3M

Investors: Oxford Bioscience Partners, HealthCare Ventures, Bellevue Asset Management, Undisclosed Firm, MPM Capital

Scoop: Radius Health, which develops osteoporosis and women's health meds, raised $43.3M to advance the company's clinical and preclinical development programs. It's lead candidate is BA058, a bone anabolic therapy for the treatment of osteoporosis, which is in Phase II trials. Additionally, the company is working to move RAD1901 for hot flashes into Phase III studies.

13. Comany: Precision Therapeutics
Based: Pittsburgh, PA
Amount: $43.01M

Investors: Adams Capital Management, Quaker BioVentures, Birchmere Ventures, Longitude Capital, TVM Capital, Draper Triangle Ventures

Scoop: Diagnostic company Precision Therapeutics booked up $43 million in a sixth round of funding. The money is being used to expand the development and commercialization of ChemoFx, a lab test that predicts how patient's cancer cells will respond to different chemotherapy agents prior to initiating the treatment.

14. Company: Light Sciences Oncology
Based: Bellevue, WA
Amount: $41M

Investors: Novo, Essex Woodlands Health Ventures, Undisclosed Firm, Undisclosed Firm, Adams Street Partners, Undisclosed Firm

Scoop: Light Sciences Oncology, which is developing Light Infusion Therapy (Litx) to treat cancer and other conditions, closed its Series C round of financing in July. Researchers at the company are undertaking two Phase III clinical trials in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma and metastatic colorectal cancer. There's also a planned Phase III trial in glioblastoma multiforme, and early stage clinical trials in benign prostatic hyperplasia.

15. Company: Catalyst Biosciences
Based: South San Francisco, CA
Amount: $40.28M

Investors: Johnson & Johnson Development Corporation, Undisclosed Venture Firm, Essex Woodlands Health Ventures, Burrill & Company, Novartis Venture Fund, HealthCare Ventures, Morgenthaler Ventures, Sofinnova Ventures

Scoop: Catalyst programs redirect protein-degrading enzymes (called Alterases) to degrade specific proteins that promote disease. It's third round of funding, raised in December, gave the company cash to build its pipeline of Alterase therapeutics. Catalyst is advancing its lead protease, CB 813, an improved factor VIIa product for the treatment of acute bleeding in hemophiliacs, through Phase I/II proof-of-concept studies in patients.

16. Company: Five Prime Therapeutics
Based: San Francisco, CA
Amount: $40.28M

Investors: Domain Associates, Versant Ventures, Odlander, Fredrikson & Co., Pfizer, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Advanced Technology Ventures

Scoop: Five Prime Therapeutics is using its discovery platform to discover protein and antibody therapeutics. The company screens secreted proteins and receptors using cell-based and in vivo screening systems. It's pipeline includes FP-1030, oncology product in Phase I trials, as well as multiple preclinical and research programs in oncology, metabolic disease and immunology. 

17. Company: Alder Biopharmaceuticals
Based: Bothell, WA
Amount: $40.2 million

Investors: TPG Growth, Delphi Ventures, Ventures West Management, Sevin Rosen Funds, H.I.G. Capital, WRF Capital

Scoop: Alder started 2008 on a good foot. The company secured a $40.2 million third round in January to support development of its lead antibody therapeutic ALD518 through multiple proof-of-concept trials. Unlike many other biopharma companies, Alder actually boosted its staff from 34 to about 50. The new employees are working on antibody manufacturing and clinical development.

18. Company: Hydra Biosciences
Based: Cambridge, MA
Amount: $39.22

Investors: Abingworth Management, BioVentures Investors, New Enterprise Associates, Biogen Idec New Ventures, Lilly Ventures, MedImmune Ventures, Polaris Venture Partners, Advanced Technology Ventures

Scoop: Cambridge's Hydra raised $39.22 million in two rounds of finacing in 2008. The company is developing drugs to treat pain, inflammation, cardiovascular and other diseases using ion channels. Hydra's funding is being used to advance Transient Receptor Potential ion channel drug programs; its most advanced program will be moving toward clinical trials in 2009. The company has already secured an additional $22 million in 2009.

19. Company: Enlight Biosciences
Based: Boston, MA
Amount: $39M

Investors: Pfizer, PureTech Ventures, Merck Capital Ventures

Scoop: Eli Lilly, Merck and Pfizer joined forces with PureTech Ventures to launch Enlight Biosciences, an unusual venture that will spin off new companies based on promising technology. Enlight has already launched Endra, a biotech company that's pursuing a new approach to medical imaging.

20. Company: BiPar Sciences
Based: Brisbane, CA
Amount: $37.5 million

Investors: Domain Associates, Quantum Technology Partners, Undisclosed Venture Firm, Vulcan Capital, Lighthouse Capital Partners, Canaan Partners,PolyTechnos Venture-Partners, Asset Management Company Venture Capital

Scoop: BiPar Sciences' lead product, BSI-201, is designed to enhance the anti-tumor effects of chemotherapy. BSI-201 is in Phase II clinical studies of patients with triple negative breast cancer, ovarian cancer and other malignancies. The company has two other drugs in pre-clinical development: BSI-401, a follow-on PARP inhibitor candidate being investigated as an oral therapy for pancreatic cancer, and BSI-302, a novel anti-tubulin therapy. BiPar already raised an additional $20 million in January 2009 to continue its work.
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